Partner with the University of the West Indies
Report recommendation: Pursue the negotiation and signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the University of Glasgow and the University of the West Indies (UWI), designed to fit the needs and requirements of UWI staff and students, while working in alignment with the educational objectives of the University of Glasgow. It is hoped that this might include, for example:
- A short-term visiting fellowship for UWI academic staff
- Student scholarships for UWI students
- Develop relationships in focused areas (eg medicine, engineering)
- Working collaboratively with UWI to advance research and education in the fields key to reparative justice (eg health, history of slavery and its legacies, post-colonial economic development etc, see: caricom.org/caricom-ten-point-plan-for-reparatory-justice)
Partnership agreement signed with the University of the West Indies
We have agreed a historic Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with The University of the West Indies. Signing ceremonies took place in summer 2019 in both Jamaica and Glasgow.
Together we are forging an academic partnership which will include the establishment of the Glasgow-Caribbean Centre for Development Research. The Centre, co-located in Glasgow and the Caribbean, will help to raise public awareness about the history of slavery and its impact around the world, and will host events and activities, sponsor research work, and coordinate academic collaborations with other universities.
Over the next two decades, we have committed to raising and spending £20 million as part of our programme of reparative justice. We will allocate some resources to support the running of the Centre, scholarships, research, public engagement, and related initiatives. Together with The University of the West Indies, we will work to attract external funding for mutually agreed projects that will benefit the communities of the Caribbean islands and other parts of the world affected by the slave trade.
Following the signing of the MoU in Glasgow on the 23 August 2019, our Principal and Vice-Chancellor Professor Sir Anton Muscatelli, said: “We are delighted to both sign this truly historic Memorandum of Understanding with The University of West Indies and it is fitting that we do so on the UNESCO day of Remembrance of the Slave Trade.
"While you can’t change the past, you can change the consequences."
"Talking about any institution’s or country’s historical links to slavery can be a difficult conversation but we felt it was a necessary one for our university to have. I am reminded of the words of Professor Sir Geoff Palmer, one of our report’s external advisers, who often says while you can’t change the past, you can change the consequences. This is the story of our journey to do this to further enhance awareness and understanding of our history and the University’s connections to both historical slavery and the abolitionist movement.”
Professor Sir Hilary Beckles, Vice-Chancellor of The University of the West Indies and co-signatory to the MoU, said: “We are delighted to sign this agreement and look forward to working with the University of Glasgow and to making the Centre for Development Research a significant, successful and long-lasting partnership.”
Scotland's National Poet, Jackie Kay, recites her poem reflecting on the University of Glasgow's past links with slavery and our new partnership with The University of the West Indies.
“Here’s the redress that’s long been owed.— University of Glasgow (@UofGlasgow) August 23, 2019
Here’s the first step on the road.”
Scots Makar @JackieKayPoet performs an original poem written for the University of Glasgow as we reflect on our past links with slavery and look to move forward with a new partnership with @UWImona pic.twitter.com/3hEC3LdejM